Ex-cons reveal the top 10 deterrents for home thieves

Ex-cons reveal the top 10 deterrents for home thieves

A new study released today by Co-op Insurance has revealed that smart homes are keeping burglars at bay.

The study, conducted among a panel of ex-convicts, found that 89% of ex-cons would be put off targeting a smart connected home, with a further two thirds (67%) stating they would steer clear of connected cars.

When delving into the reasons as to why this is the case, 44% said thieves are opportunists and so would avoid these trickier break-ins.

Despite this, just 5% of UK adults have invested in smart technology for their homes.

The study also reveals the top 10 factors which ex-convicts say are biggest deterrents for burglars. CCTV cameras, the sound of a barking dog and strong heavy doors are most likely to put off home burglars. Whilst, CCTV street cameras, car alarms and street lighting top the list for car thieves.

Despite this, just over a tenth (14%) of UK adults say they’ve installed CCTV cameras and whilst ex-thieves point out that motion activated security lights are a key deterrent for home thieves, just a  quarter (24%) of UK adults say they’ve installed such lights.


Further highlighting the UK’s lack of home security, over a quarter (28%) of UK adults say they don’t take any security precautions. Over half (55%) sleep with their windows open at night, a quarter (24%) leave their doors unlocked whilst at home, and over a tenth (12%) have admitted to leaving their garden gates open.

What's more, a fifth (20%) said they actively post photos on social media showing that they’re on holiday.

Caroline Hunter, Head of Home Insurance at Co-op commented: “Our research shows that almost half (44%) of thieves are opportunists and so it’s really important that home and car owners are vigilant and think carefully about the security of their homes and vehicles.

Nobody should have to go through the trauma of having their property burgled and there are some small measures which homeowners should be mindful of to ensure any opportunists cannot be tempted.”

When weighing up properties to target, ex-convicts advised that the most difficult break-ins are of those properties situated in cities (82%). Three quarters (75%) of ex-convicts, said properties in isolated locations are easiest to break into.  

Furthermore, the study reveals that houses off dirt tracks, bungalows and properties on housing estates are among those easiest to break into, whilst mid terraces, apartments with manned security and semi-detached houses are the most difficult to target.

Noel ‘Razor’ Smith, a former bank robber, commented: “As a former criminal, I know all the tricks homeowners use to keep their homes safe, that’s why I find it shocking that the Co-op’s research reveals 28% of us don’t take any precautions whatsoever. Luckily there are some very simple steps everyone can take to make our homes more secure and keep our valuables safe”

Lynn Farrar, Chair of Neighbourhood Watch added: “Having your car or home broken into can have a devastating financial and emotional impact on families, the effects of which can stay with an individual for some time.

Sadly, break-ins do happen and this study re-enforces the need for greater home security, so it’s really good to hear that the Co-op are raising awareness of this.”

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Tony Gimple
Tony Gimple 09 Dec 2017

Linking professionalism to limited company borrowing is a flawed concept. Despite S24 etc., limited companies are the most tax inefficient way of running a property business and leave borrowers seriously...

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Evelyn Attwood
Evelyn Attwood 01 Dec 2017

It's normal. If you plan to buy a house in one of the most beautiful spots in the country you should pay a high price.

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Evelyn Attwood
Evelyn Attwood 01 Dec 2017

I think that the situation will be the same at December.

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Scott Garnet
Scott Garnet 06 Nov 2017

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richardrawlings
richardrawlings 01 Nov 2017

What has not been mentioned here is the effect of not only higher interest payments, but also that these payments are less likely to be offsettable as a business cost due to the scaling back of mortgage...

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Kelvin Lloyd
Kelvin Lloyd 09 Oct 2017

IT is up, to the Planners. If they will only give permission for bungalows on certain (suitable) sites, they will be built.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

It's just the beginning of the shocking rise.

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maggie swift
maggie swift 09 Oct 2017

I have recently read that the bungalows can provide social housing for elderly residents in London.

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zoe glover
zoe glover 05 Oct 2017

Update! Worst company I have ever dealt with. Undervalued a Cambridge property by over 100k, wont take on any evidence of valuation including a RICS valuation done 3 years ago for the very same value...

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Paul Edwards
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Its nonsense articles such as this that make it harder to get clients to realise just how difficult the market is out there. When you see Rightmove and there are more 'price reduced' then 'new' most days...

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Tom Allen
Tom Allen 20 Sep 2017

Absolutely agree with you!

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RyanGeo
RyanGeo 18 Sep 2017

A sharp correction would be a less dramatic expression to use. That is already underway in certain sectors in Reading where I practice as Chartered Surveyor

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